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Discover the mysteries of the Doge’s Palace in Venice with this secret itineraries tour. Skip the long line and head straight inside to explore the palace’s opulent public chambers adorned with masterpieces of Renaissance art. Learn how the powerful doges ruled the Venetian Republic with an iron fist, and gain rare entry into shadowy quarters of the Piombi attic prison, where Casanova was once locked up. Walk across the famous Bridge of Sighs and wander the dark dungeons of the New Prison network.


  • 1.25-hour guided Doge's Palace tour with skip-the-line entrance ticket
  • Tour the beautiful public rooms and see Renaissance artwork by Tintoretto and Veronese
  • Learn about the doges of Venice, who ruled the city for a thousand years
  • Enjoy exclusive access to the Piombi attic prison, where Casanova was once held
  • Walk across the Bridge of Sighs to explore the New Prisons

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Skip the Line: Doge's Palace Secret Itineraries Tour

See the Bridge of Sighs at Doge's Palace

Built in the 14th century, the Doge’s Palace was once the governing base of the former Venetian Republic’s powerful rulers, the doges. Meet your guide in St Mark’s Square, and admire the palace’s magnificent Venetian Gothic architecture before heading to the front of the long entry queue. 

Wander through awe-inspiring public rooms adorned from floor to ceiling with gilded carvings, murals and opulent décor. Your guide will point out Renaissance masterworks by painters Tintoretto and Veronese, including the famous ceiling fresco Juno Bestowing her Gifts on Venice. See the Trial Chambers of the Council of Ten and learn how this room was used to dispatch the fearsome secret service to investigate traitors of the republic. 

Ascend to the attic and step inside the secretive chambers of the Piombi prison — a network of cells directly beneath the palace’s lead roof that was generally reserved for upper-class inmates and political prisoners. Let your imagination run wild in this part of the palace that is rarely open to the public, and hear how the legendary Venetian lover Casanova was imprisoned here and later made a daring escape. 

Next, cross the famous Bridge of Sighs into the New Prison complex, built in the 16th century. Wander the harrowing network of cells on your own, and then breathe a sigh of relief as you step back into the open air of St Mark’s Square at the end of your 1.25-hour tour. 

Customer Reviews

Richard M

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

It was well-organized. We started and ended on time. Our guide was very well-informed.

Dr K A F

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

I have been to the palace itself before but this tour showed us parts that we don't usually see and gave us a whole new insight as to how the Venice system of government worked. Also a real contrast to the sumptuous rooms of the main palace. The guide was really good and explained things well in excellent English. I would certainly recommend this tour to anyone who wants to see the parts which are not in the guide book.

Kirsten B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

Always nice to go to a place like this before the crowds. And to go behind the scenes always makes it extra special. Our guide told intriguing stories that totally transported you back to Venice of old. The Palace is fascinating and the artwork is incredible. This can all be seen after the tour. It's the prison cells and the stories that made this tour worthwhile.

Vickie J

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

Great tour. Aga was an amazing guide as she was fun and informative. Loved her and the tour.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

This tour was amazing....our guide was wonderful and so informative. You learn so much about the Venetian history with just this tour. I highly recommend this tour and the skip the line is the only way to go!


5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

No lines, no waiting. Our guide was very informative. It was great to be in a small group and see behind the scenes.

Jennifer P

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

Really great tour, the guide was exceptional, funny knowledgable and very likeable she bought the whole palace to life for us my husband thought she should be on the stage she was so entertaining, really good use of our holiday money,very enjoyable.

Penny G

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

Loved this tour! Aga was a fantastic guide! Very knowledgeable and she has an excellent sense of humour and had a good rapport with the group. The tour was extensive and detailed and you get to see areas of the Doge's Palace you would not see otherwise! Really enjoyed this and would highly recommend!


5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

What a magnificent palace. Our tour guide was so much fun and really knew her stuff. I stayed towards the back of the group so I could take my time taking pictures. It was amazing and well worth your time. I went in July 2016

Thomas C

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

Cannot recommend more highly. This is an amazing tour of an amazine piece of history that most do not know anything about! The skip the line is well worth it, and our guide was wonderful.

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